Distance: 14 km
Elevation Gain: 1324 m (4344 ft)
Time: 9 hours
Date Added: May 28, 2009
Last Update: May 16, 2010
Mount Decoeli is one of the highest peaks you can see from around Haines Junction and the highway. On a clear day you get a sweeping view of mountains, valleys, and icefields.
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From Haines Junction, drive north along the Alaska Highway for about 20 kms. Just north of the Bear Creak Summit sign, there is a pull-out on the left.
From the south end of the pull-out, there is an obvious trail. You will follow along this trail which is along-side the creek for about 5km. At about 5km, you will reach the rock glacier.
The rock glacier is a decent place to camp if you are staying overnight. It is at the base of the mountain and right before any steep inclines.
From the rock glacier, walk up the far scree ridge. Follow the ridge all the way to the summit. Return the same way.
From the rock glacier, with Decoeli on your right, there is another ridge to your left which is a nice hike. Depending on the time of year and the amount of snow, you can either follow the gully left of the rock glacier all the way up to a saddle, or hike up a scree ridge.
Either way, walk for about 1km from the rock glacier camping area either on the rock glacier or in the gully beside it. Climb the ridge or the gully to the saddle. After climbing for another 1km, you will reach a flat area that is filled with ground squirrels. There is a nice viewpoint into the other cirque at the far end of this flat area.
If you want to continue, you can climb up the ridge towards the summit. Hike up the screen slope for a couple hundred meters. At the top, you can continue along the ridge or turn back down the same way you came up.
There isn't much snow in this wind-swept region, so winter doesn't provide too many challenges. The creek is frozen and packed snow can make the going fairly easy.Note: Overnight trips in Kluane National Park and Reserve require registration and approved bear resistant food canisters. Please visit the Park's website for details.
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